An antiproliferative BMP-2/PPARgamma/apoE axis in human and murine SMCs and its role in pulmonary hypertension.
ABSTRACT: Loss-of-function mutations in bone morphogenetic protein receptor II (BMP-RII) are linked to pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH); the ligand for BMP-RII, BMP-2, is a negative regulator of SMC growth. Here, we report an interplay between PPARgamma and its transcriptional target apoE downstream of BMP-2 signaling. BMP-2/BMP-RII signaling prevented PDGF-BB-induced proliferation of human and murine pulmonary artery SMCs (PASMCs) by decreasing nuclear phospho-ERK and inducing DNA binding of PPARgamma that is independent of Smad1/5/8 phosphorylation. Both BMP-2 and a PPARgamma agonist stimulated production and secretion of apoE by SMCs. Using a variety of methods, including short hairpin RNAi in human PASMCs, PAH patient-derived BMP-RII mutant PASMCs, a PPARgamma antagonist, and PASMCs isolated from PPARgamma- and apoE-deficient mice, we demonstrated that the antiproliferative effect of BMP-2 was BMP-RII, PPARgamma, and apoE dependent. Furthermore, we created mice with targeted deletion of PPARgamma in SMCs and showed that they spontaneously developed PAH, as indicated by elevated RV systolic pressure, RV hypertrophy, and increased muscularization of the distal pulmonary arteries. Thus, PPARgamma-mediated events could protect against PAH, and PPARgamma agonists may reverse PAH in patients with or without BMP-RII dysfunction.
Project description:Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)-gamma is reduced in pulmonary arteries (PAs) of patients with PA hypertension (PAH), and we reported that deletion of PPARgamma in smooth muscle cells (SMCs) of transgenic mice results in PAH. However, the sequelae of loss of PPARgamma in PA endothelial cells (ECs) are unknown. Therefore, we bred Tie2-Cre mice with PPARgamma(flox/flox) mice to induce EC loss of PPARgamma (Tie2 PPARgamma(-/-)), and we assessed PAH by right ventricular systolic pressure (RVSP), RV hypertrophy (RVH), and muscularized distal PAs in room air (RA), after chronic hypoxia (CH), and after 4 wk of recovery in RA (Rec-RA). The Tie2 PPARgamma(-/-) mice developed spontaneous PAH in RA with increased RVSP, RVH, and muscularized PAs vs. wild type (WT); both genotypes exhibited a similar degree of PAH following chronic hypoxia, but Tie2 PPARgamma(-/-) mice had more residual PAH compared with WT mice after Rec-RA. The Tie2 PPARgamma(-/-) vs. WT mice in RA had increased platelet-derived growth factor receptor-beta (PDGF-Rbeta) expression and signaling, despite an elevation in the PPARgamma target apolipoprotein E, an inhibitor of PDGF signaling. Inhibition of PDGF-Rbeta signaling with imatinib, however, was sufficient to reverse the PAH observed in the Tie2 PPARgamma(-/-) mice. Thus the disruption of PPARgamma signaling in EC is sufficient to cause mild PAH and to impair recovery from CH-induced PAH. Inhibition of heightened PDGF-Rbeta signaling is sufficient to reverse PAH in this genetic model.
Project description:<b>Background:</b> The beneficial effects of parasympathetic stimulation in pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) have been reported. However, the specific mechanism has not been completely clarified. Donepezil, an oral cholinesterase inhibitor, enhances parasympathetic activity by inhibiting acetylcholinesterase, whose therapeutic effects in PAH and its mechanism deserve to be investigated. <b>Methods:</b> The PAH model was established by a single intraperitoneal injection of monocrotaline (MCT, 50 mg/kg) in adult male Sprague-Dawley rats. Donepezil was administered via intraperitoneal injection daily after 1 week of MCT administration. At the end of the study, PAH status was confirmed by echocardiography and hemodynamic measurement. Testing for acetylcholinesterase activity and cholinergic receptor expression was used to evaluate parasympathetic activity. Indicators of pulmonary arterial remodeling and right ventricular (RV) dysfunction were assayed. The proliferative and apoptotic ability of pulmonary arterial smooth muscle cells (PASMCs), inflammatory reaction, macrophage infiltration in the lung, and activation of bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMDMs) were also tested. PASMCs from the MCT-treated rats were co-cultured with the supernatant of BMDMs treated with donepezil, and then, the proliferation and apoptosis of PASMCs were evaluated. <b>Results:</b> Donepezil treatment effectively enhanced parasympathetic activity. Furthermore, it markedly reduced mean pulmonary arterial pressure and RV systolic pressure in the MCT-treated rats, as well as reversed pulmonary arterial remodeling and RV dysfunction. Donepezil also reduced the proliferation and promoted the apoptosis of PASMCs in the MCT-treated rats. In addition, it suppressed the inflammatory response and macrophage activation in both lung tissue and BMDMs in the model rats. More importantly, donepezil reduced the proliferation and promoted the apoptosis of PASMCs by suppressing M2-macrophage activation. <b>Conclusion:</b> Donepezil could prevent pulmonary vascular and RV remodeling, thereby reversing PAH progression. Moreover, enhancement of the parasympathetic activity could reduce the proliferation and promote the apoptosis of PASMCs in PAH by suppressing M2-macrophage activation.
Project description:The increased proliferation and apoptosis resistance of pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMCs) drive the progression of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). The transient receptor potential melastatin 7 (TRPM7) is an endogenous magnesium channel reported to promote the proliferation of SMCs. However, whether TRPM7 is associated with PAH pathogenesis remains uncharacterized. We found that TRPM7 was downregulated in PASMCs from PAH human and Sprague-Dawley rats with hypoxia-induced PAH. Similar results were reproduced in PASMCs treated with PAH stimuli in vitro. Additionally, the TRPM7 currents and intracellular magnesium level in PASMCs were also reduced by PAH stimuli. Functionally, TRPM7 inhibition with waixenicin A or knockdown promoted, and reversely, its overexpression inhibited the proliferation and apoptosis resistance of PASMCs. Moreover, waixenicin A exacerbated hypoxia-induced PAH features in rats. Furthermore, TRPM7 inhibition activated MEK/ERK pathway, and the effects of TRPM7 inhibition were drastically attenuated by pathway specific inhibitor U0126, thus suggesting that activating MEK/ERK pathway is a predominant mechanism through which TRPM7 inhibition exacerbates PAH. In summary, these results may identify TRPM7 as a novel negative regulator in PAH pathogenesis, and suggest that improving its function may represent an antagonistic strategy to modify PAH progression.
Project description:Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a vascular remodeling disease of cardiopulmonary units. No cure is currently available due to an incomplete understanding of vascular remodeling. Here we identify CD146-hypoxia-inducible transcription factor 1 alpha (HIF-1?) cross-regulation as a key determinant in vascular remodeling and PAH pathogenesis. CD146 is markedly upregulated in pulmonary artery smooth muscle cells (PASMCs/SMCs) and in proportion to disease severity. CD146 expression and HIF-1? transcriptional program reinforce each other to physiologically enable PASMCs to adopt a more synthetic phenotype. Disruption of CD146-HIF-1?